Sunday, August 26, 2012


Normally, I'm pretty annoyed with myself when I worry about everything. BUT! For the second time in two weeks, my obsessive worrying has paid off!

Last night, I couldn't find my Bluetooth headset. I had it on Friday, brought it into the house, and it vanished. I checked under the couch, in every bag I've ever used, on my desk in my guest room, under Sadie's bed...I just couldn't find the darn thing! I sat on the couch, which was the last place I had it, and remembered that I crumpled up a ton of coupons and thrown them on my coffee table. I had then scooped up the coupons and thrown them out.

I have gone through the garbage several times to find things, and it is never there, but of course, this time I knew if I didn't look through the garbage I would be bothered forever. So even though I felt stupid and knew I wasn't going to find it, I got a plastic bag on my arm and dug  through egg shells, spearmint tea, what appeared to be old frozen fruit, and finally got to the bottom, where the coupons were. And there, only slightly worse for wear, was my Bluetooth.

Yay! Anxiety does good things sometimes!

(I cleaned it off with anti-bacterial wipes and used water on the plastic piece that actually goes into my ear for those of you who think I'm super gross right now. Trust me: IT'S CLEAN.)


Sunday, August 19, 2012

The good things about anxiety

1. It gives me a reason to use the "x" button on my keyboard.

2. It helps me keep my dog from getting paralyzed. Sadie was not having a good weekend; she was yelping (really, screaming) every time she jumped on anything; my bed, the couch, the curb. I wasn't able to lift her up without her piercing my ears. Worried, as I tend to be, I took her to the vet, all the while assuming it was going to cost close to a thousand dollars (x-rays, unknowns, etc) and we still wouldn't know what was wrong. I would have just over-reacted.

Turns out she hurt her back. If I had waited, not listening to my anxiety, she might have gotten much, much worse--permanent back damage, lots of pain, and possibly back leg paralysis (and cost me wayyy more than the $50 it took for the check up). Now she's feeling much better thanks to prednisone and bedrest. Plus, she gets her own super cute bed now!

OK, it's not totally super cute, but 

So, while I usually hate my anxiety, this weekend it did me good. 

Also, I rode 15.4 miles. School starts tomorrow, and I'm guest blogging for a friend. Wohoo! 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


My Dog is judging me.

She has a perfectly good warm body downstairs, who will gladly pet her and hug and squeeze her, and pay attention. Instead, she stands, eyes clear, ears at what we call Defcon 2 (raised, but not entirely alert), with a faint noise, between a wheeze and a whine, coming out of her nose every time she breathes. She watches me, unmoving, as I work.

She only does this when I start working on work. If I am sitting, bullshitting at the computer, playing The Settlers: Rise of an Empire, or reading Slate nonstop, she is upstairs, licking herself on my pillows, or downstairs, lounging in the sun. Once I crack open a book and start typing, though, she judges.

You don’t love me. The look says. Something else is more important.

I’ll give her food. I’ll give her water. I’ll give her treats. I’ll set her up on the couch with a wonderfully fluffy Big Dog from Petsmart. I’ll throw a stuffingless raccoon into the other room for her to fetch. I’ll squeak a lion bleeding white polyester from the neck to distract her.


Just the eyes, and the faint noise.

No, it says, I’ll be ok. Don’t mind me. Standing here, dying from lack of affection.  


She will, eventually, sometimes, leave. She'll go curl up on her bed, or on the couch, and she'll give a high pitched cry every few minutes, just in case I have forgotten her. 

When I call her to me, she doesn't come. If I try to pick her up to put her on my lap, she backs away a few steps. If I catch her, she jumps off a few seconds after being set up between me and the computer, a painstaking process that involves readjustments of elbows and nails digging into thighs. She'll then stand about two feet from my chair and whine/weep/wheeze.  

My dog. I love her. Who else shows such devotion to my work? She always knows when I am working, and stands guard until I am done. Even if it is fricken annoying. 

Going without

Each month for as long as I can, I've decided to go without something I usually go with. It started in July with pop. I chose that because I drank wayyy too much and I was trying to get healthier. I did really well, only having pop on July 4th--and maybe once or twice after that. This month, I'm trying to go without eating out. Special occasions don't count (A friend is moving back home down south, and we'll probably go out to dinner for that). Right now, I was just thinking I could go get Dunkin' Donuts on my way to work. That's the sort of thing I want to avoid in August. :)

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Friday. :)

ON Friday, I went to the Poconos for my friend's wedding. There were four of us road tripping together, and it was planned that we would all meet at my house and leave from here, since I'm the most northern of everyone these days. One of my fellow road trippers said it would only take about 3 hours and 20 minutes to get to the venue, so we decided to leave around 1:00. We told the other two to be at my house by 12:30, because they are people who tend to be late (but they have a kid, so we still love them.)

Around 8:45, I met my soon-to-be-roommate to help him move stuff from his house to my house. Around 10:30, I was back at my house and trying to move stuff from my basement to my guest room. At 11:35 I stopped to make myself lunch. At 11:45 I realized I forgot to get the bride and groom their card and present, so I ran to Walmart. At 12:05 I was back at my house and in the shower, at which time my soon-to-be roomie showed up with some more of his stuff. At 12:15 I was out and trying on my dress, which wouldn't zip. STBR couldn't zip it up, either, and I thought I was going to have to change my whole outfit. At 12: 18 I was drying my hair (topless, because it was REALLY hot in my bathroom) when my BFF and fellow roadtripper came in and scared the ever-loving crap out of me by laughing at the fact I was drying my hair while topless. (At least she understood why). She got my dress zipped up and went to hang with STBR before the rest of the gang showed up. At 12:35, everyone was downstairs, waiting for me. At 12:50, STBR told me he wasn't moving in that day, as planned, but had been told he couldn't move out until September.  By 1:00, we were all in the car, BFF and I wearing our dresses, the others planning to change once we got there. The ceremony started at 5:00. According to the original plan, we would get there around 4:30.

I put the directions into my GPS, and saw that the trip was actually four and half hours, without traffic or bathroom breaks. Not three. That would put us there at 5:30, which should be right after the ceremony ended.

Normally, this would have made me a cranky, rotting, pissy, angry, anxious mess. But I truly wasn't upset. I knew BFF felt bad about not actually checking, so on one hand I didn't want to make her feel worse. But I also genuinely didn't mind all that much. We kind of played the licence plate game, stopped at a gas station called LIBERTY! to change, and I drove the mountain leg of the trip. WE actually made up most of our time, but got stuck in traffic and lost it all again. But still, it was fine.

We got to the venue right as the B&G were starting their "sand ceremony," where they poured two colors of sand together to represent each other. We saw them proclaimed as husband and wife, and we danced the night away. We ate good food and drank too much champagne (three extra glasses at our table! you can't waste that!) and then drove home (not right away, duh).

There were little hotdogs wrapped in a pastries, and delicious crab cakes. There was a cookie table and a candy table and cake and ice cream for all. The Bride looked beautiful in her dress, and the groom had his favorite beer with him for the evening. Everyone was happy, or at least looked it. It was a really, really nice night.

Best part of the day: Watching the Groom's family dance at their dinner tables, while seated, to "Sweet Caroline."

Quote of the day:
Megan: "I'm a super-trucker." and "Adam, he's on Bath Salts!"
Adam: "Who needs bath salts when you have hair spray in a car?"

Song for the Day: Sweet Caroline (BAH BAH BAH) good times have never been so good (SO GOOD. SO GOOD. SO GOOD.)

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Hi again.

I just had a really important realization: it’s not that people are doing such special things with their lives. It’s that they are finding special things in what they do. 

So my rainy soul miasma doesn't come from me not doing something special with my life; it’s that I refuse to acknowledge that my life is special. 

With that in mind, I am going to try harder to reflect on each day for the foreseeable future and find the meaning in it. 

That being said, today I started back to school--teaching, not taking. Chatham starts again on August 26th, so I have some time. Today was the start of the Freshman Academy Success Academy, which is 8 days of acclimation for the kids coming into ninth grade. (On a side note, I love my job, and I am really happy that they moved me to ninth grade English. Wonderful!) 

The day started with a welcome presentation in the Auditorium. Two boys in the row in front of me-one that is rather nondescript, and one that has a Green Hat--have cell phones out- I give them a few seconds to exit out of apps and put them away, but of course, they don't. I went over to them and tell them to put them away. And I tried to smile while I did  it, but I'm self conscious about whether or not I look psycho or just inviting. They do put the phones away, though, and there was minimal lip about it, so I chalked it up as a win. A few minutes later, I noticed another boy, K (as we'll find out soon enough) had his cell phone out, on his lap, kind of hidden under his shirt, but not really. It looked like he is preparing to do something with it; he's trying to be sneaky, maybe, but maybe not? I leaned in. 

"Put that away," I stage whispered, realizing I'm pointing to his crotch as I do it. I wait for him to be snarky, but he isn't, to his credit. 
"What?" He asks. 
"The cell phone. Put it away." I gestured again. 
"Jeez, ok. Calm down." He slowly put it in his back pocket. 

Normally, telling me to calm down is the best way to rile me up (just ask a few from last year). I think about getting snarky back, but I don't, and put my stupid smile on again. 

I spend the rest of the time trying to get Green Hat boy to pay attention and stop talking and the two girls around K to stop talking. I look longingly at the back of the auditorium a few times. I scream "CR!" when the athletic director yells "WE ARE" to get the kids pumped up. The two girls and K look at me funny. 

When the students came to the classroom after the presentations, K walked in to mine, meaning it is 95% likely have him this year. (I'm suddenly glad that I didn't snark at him earlier.) I gave the kids a thought exercise (they are going on a year-long trip to mars, and they have a 13 member crew. They have to decide which four people to send back to Earth, and explain why). The discussion was really fun, and at the end we had about ten minutes left. Throughout the course of the period I had been trying to be upbeat and chill (for example, one of the groups said they would bring a 24 year old,beautiful, intelligent woman with a drug problem on the Mars trip. Their reasoning? "She'll be easy to take advantage of since she'll need drugs." Rather than flip the eff out on them and kick them out of class, I talked them through why that was so incredibly inappropriate.) I gave the kids the extra time to ask me questions about the high school, and classes, and all that jazz. 

When their questions petered off, I took some quick surveys--who read the summer books, who liked it, who would consider themselves an "English" person, etc--and K asked if they had had to read the summer books. 

"Because I didn't read mine. Well, I read the title page. I mean, what are we going to do with them?" 

I smiled when he said he didn't even read it, so he relaxed a bit, I think. I told them I wasn't sure what exactly we were doing with the books for the year. 

"It's OK that you don't like to read, K. Not everyone is an English person. I'm not a math person. I try to structure things--I mean, it is high school, and so you will have to read something--but you remind me of a girl last year who said, 'Ms. B, I haven't read a book yet and I'm not going to this year, either.' At the end of the year she held out a book that she choose and said, 'Ms. B, I read this, and I read it for you.' So, you know, hopefully you'll find something you like and you'll read that this year, and it'll be a good class for you. But it's OK if you don't like English. I don't mind." (I was rambly). 

K told me about a book he did read last year, although he can't remember the title or anything about it (he was under pressure, so that's OK). He ended it with, 

"Yeah, well, I think I'll like English this year. It always depends so much on the teacher, you know?" 

And I got all warm and fuzzy inside. He thinks I'm a cool teacher already! Yay! (World: remind me of this when K and I are inevitably SCREAMING it out during research paper season) :-D 

I saw Green Hat a few times throughout the day, too, and he was either mocking me by saying hi and pretending to be friendly or he thinks I really like him because I yelled at him a lot during the presentations. I'm not sure which...

I saw a girl writing at lunch instead of eating, and told her about creative writing club (which I just typed as creative wiring club. They might become sister clubs in the future...). She was literally speechless for a second, and then bumbled all her words in excitement. I also helped her open her locker later. 

So, three people that think I'm OK: at least one that I made really happy, and two that seem to like me that might not have if I had given into my more cranky tendencies. A good count for the day. 

Bonus story!: Today, as the kids were getting their stuff in the cafeteria, a bat came out of nowhere and dive bombed my assistant principal. The girls were screaming! No idea what happened to the bat. When asked if it was a bird by a student, I told her yes it was. 

"A nocturnal bird. With leathery wings." 

I mean, I can't go cold turkey on the sarcasm! 

Best part of the day: A tie between a bat bearing down on my boss in the cafeteria and K telling me he thinks he's going to like English this year. 

Quote of the day: 
Me: Think about what you are going to say before you say it. If you wouldn't say it in front of your grandmother, don't say it in my classroom. 
Kid: But my grandmother's weird...Ok, I'll think as I speak! 
Me: *Evil Glare with half smile smirk.*
Kid: Ok, before I speak. 
Me: There you go! *hopefully not psychotic grin.*  

Song for today: School's out for summ...oh, wait. Sorry! 

Thursday, August 11, 2011


So, I have a garage. YAY! Unfortunalty, it is manual, so as I was closing it today, I accidentally grabbed a seam and smashed three of my fingers. Silly me, I kept pulling the darn thing down even after I was in pain, because I didn't realize what was going on. Sigh.

I just mowed my lawn for the first time EVER. I did it mostly for the neighbors. It wasn't pretty. Melissa had to come down to turn the darn thing on for me, and she stayed with the dogs (hers and sadie) while I did the mowing. Sadie was terrified. It was cute!

So, I've been in the new house with a working phone for about 24 hours. I've already had 3 junk calls, all trying to get me to buy something. Sigh.

School has been going well. I'm in a science classroom tomorrow and Monday. That will be fun. At least it isn't math!

I'm off to DC tomorrow, to watch Wicked with Mr. Sean Meloy. Wheee!

Chatham was wonderful. I have some writing to do for next Friday, and I'm hoping to get a lot of that done tonight. I'm so excited. I have my loans, and I'm ready to go!